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Yoga for Yoga Teachers in Cape Town.

September 21, 2012

Yoga for Yoga Teachers in Cape Town.

As much as being a yoga teacher is a wonderful career to be involved in, it can also be very challenging on many levels. As a yoga teacher I find that attending my regular weekly yoga class as well as monthly workshops are an invaluable source of knowledge and a great way to meet like-minded people. Over the years of attending many workshops, lunches and teas with my yogi colleagues, I found that we were all facing similar challenges on a daily basis. If you are a yoga teacher you may relate to some of them yourself, such as:

· We have different socializing times. Generally most classes are mornings and evenings with lunch time free. Friends and partners who have a regular 9-5 job find it quite testing to find a week night where they can hang out with us for an early supper or movie. Weekends are often spent with family and most workshops happen on weekends.

· Those who have kids find that fitting a daily self-practice in can be extremely difficult and is often non-existent, especially when the kids are sick.

· It is difficult to find a suitable yoga class in one’s area where the day and time are suitable to one’s lifestyle and pocket.

· Many have to supplement their yoga classes with additional part or full-time work as remuneration is often unstable and low and

· It is so easy to slip out of a good routine when one hits a difficult patch emotionally and mentally in life.

So what to do about it?

Well, about two years ago a great yoga colleague of mine, Saskia Schelling, and myself decided that we were going to start a yoga class specifically for yoga teachers. It was going to be free, anyone teaching any style of yoga, (or a similar movement practice), would be able to join, no matter how long they had been teaching yoga for, newly qualified or an old hat on the mat, all were welcome. The only requirement would be that each teacher would need to teach one of the classes one of the weeks. So we found a regular space, a day and time that suited the both of us and we invited other yoga teachers who lived in our area to join our little group. Over the years this little core group, grew and shrunk and grew again with the ebb and flow that life hands us.

The great thing about these classes are that you are guided through a different yoga style or practice each week, which means you are introduced to something new and interesting each time you attend, seeing postures, breathing practices, relaxation techniques that are done slightly differently and exploring them in a safe and supportive environment. The good thing about such days is that for an hour or so you are transported out of the real world and you are able to go deeper into your practice, you are surrounded by like-minded teachers who are all more than willing to help, share their knowledge and experiences which in turn helps to bring new inspiration and teaching to one’s regular classes.

So after two years our little group is still going strong. We have changed the way we do things a little, we now explore yoga articles and discuss postures, sequences and different anatomical functions or injuries. It is such a wonderful thing to be able to do, gaining more knowledge and a different perspective on a weekly basis.

So for those yoga teachers who can’t make our Friday morning sessions in Tokai, I challenge you to find a friend and to start your own sessions, find a spot, day and time that work for you and then invite others to join. Start with a small core group and you will find that over time it will grow. All you need is motivation and dedication, (and if there is a coffee shop nearby then a personal catch up AFTER the session is always a super possibility). I will admit, once or twice when it was just myself and Marion, we skipped the session and did poached eggs on toast with a chai latte – but only once or twice ;-).

Looking forward to seeing you on the mat.




Nina Saasck is the founder of Yoga Awakening Africa and has been teaching integral hatha yoga, (Sivananda yoga) since 2003 in Cape Town. She loves spending time in her yoga studio with her students, up the mountain with her hiking buddies, around a dinner table with her friends, and when she can spending time in bed reading a good book with Kat and some Lindt chocolates. She believes that health equals balance in life, enjoying what you do and doing what you enjoy, and to never take yourself too seriously! Email Nina if you would like to join the teachers Friday morning session in Tokai. |

* To find a yoga teacher in your area click here.

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